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and the culinary year

            at the best restaurant within one mile south of Philomath(pop.2145)


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jan28 Peperone



gathering together farm and restaurant, willamette valley, oregon


February 21-the Farmstand and Restaurant will open this Thursday!!!!!!

Welcome back everyone.  New post at  Barn and Table

January 25-Aimee Brown and I have signed on for a book writing project to feature stories, recipes and philosophy from GTF. To further that project we have opened a new blog called    Barn and Table Go and see what we have to say......Aimee has a beautiful writing style in contrast to my early years of telegraph style.

We got in a whole hog from Mosiac Farms early in January and some of that went into the salami nostrana which is a simply seasoned salami with large dice fatback garnish. here are the early results from our first batch of the year;

the nostrano is simply seasoned, it depends more upon the quality of the pork than the complexity of the flavorings. This example has very quickly reached the minimum water loss. We will leave it hanging for four more weeks to pimp out the background flavors. You will taste this salame nostrano this spring on salumi platters and sandwiches. If it's not on the menu ask the server if there is some to taste!

breaking news; Alison will be an oft seen familiar smiling face this season as she takes up some of the responsibilities of our beloved Djienaba and Stephanie before her. Welcome!!


December 19- Happy holidays everyone! Receiving cards with new pictures of kids one year older and the stories that go along with them makes me feel like sharing and connecting. I don't have anything new to share but an article that has just come out about Behind the Scenes in the Gathering Together Farm Kitchen:  put out by our friends at ten rivers food web.  Go out and eat, drive safe and love the relatives.



December 11-We had two unbelievable events on Saturday the 10th. first of all the Corvallis slowfoodies put on a Terra Madre Event at the Philomath Grange Hall. It was very well attended by locals who are interested in local artisans and products. Slowfood produced african fare to sell as a fundraiser at the event. I had fun watching, meeting and helping the slowfood crew who used our kitchen to prepare their delights. Burnheimer meats also presented at the event and Brad was prepared with a crateful of salami;

meanwhile at the farm we were having a Holiday party for some very respected and beloved guests. So beloved in fact that I made coctail weiners alla GTF for them. For those who might possibly make them they are a classic 5-4-3 ration emulsified sausage seasoned with cardomom, mace, clove and paprika.

Here is a sample of some of the appetizers. Suppli al telefono, Cocktail weiner with polenta and pickled pepper, curried delicata with napa cabbage and toasted almonds. Thanks to the holiday revelers and everyone who made Terra Madre a success.

November 29- Gathering Together Farms - YouTube

November 22- The season is over for the Restaurant and Gathering Together Farm. The year was long and successful. We had a full dining room and happy community. We welcomed some new faces and were glad to see some well known smiles. We tried new things, we found new passions, we  ate some great food, and at the end of the day we were proud of what we accomplished. During the break we evaluate what we have tried, who we  tried it with and chart a course for the next season. We said goodbye to our good friend Djienaba who's shoes will be tough to fill. Thank you  to all our happy guests and promise to return next year excited with new ideas and fresh smiles.

One of the highlights for me was seeing my crew pay attention to details I haven't even yelled about yet. We are building a seasoned crew. At the AAA dinners put on by the staff I saw a lot of maturity.....I am not the type to mist up but if I were this would have been the time. I was proud.

see you soon.



November 15- Last week of service for the 2011 season. Some of the highlights to come and try are;

Barley and cipolini stuffed delicata squash over red russian kale,  and smoked pork loin and braised red cabbage sandwich...

Another event of note was the CIA visit. For the last two years the Hyde Park CIA has come to Oregon to study the wines and the vintners for which we are so famous. They also come by the Gathering Together Farm for a meal and tour. This year they enjoyed a pressed duck terrine with sweetbreads and carrot.


Next course was pork loin with our legendary sour cherry mostarda

Enjoy the pictures and come and eat.


November 14- I have been asked recently for some recipes/techniques that we use at the restaurant. I would guess if one person asks there are most likely others who would like to know. So, I will answer the requests here and see how that works.

A true lover of all things german and porky has had my liverwurst a few times and has a few hogs coming ready for slaughter herself. She asked for some recipe advice and here it is;

From your slaughtered hog take the liver, the head, all the scrap cuttings, and most likely a little shoulder as well. Take the head and put it in a pot of salted cold water. Bring to the boil. skim the resulting foam. Add two onions cut in half, two carrot, two leek, two stalks celery, bay leaf, pepper and cook for 3-4 hours till the ears are soft. At the restaurant we put the head on around midnight and take it off at 6 in the morning. Let cool. remove head. Save broth.  Pick all the meaty, connective tissuey bits. Leave glands and brains. Include tongue and snout and ears. Weigh it. The recipe is one part head, one part liver and one part scrap/shoulder. Poach the weighed and cubed scrap/shoulder in the head broth.  Cool. Julienne the onions and sweat till soft and golden. Cool. Mix with spices the head, liver, shoulder and onions and run through the grinder. At the restaurant we have a buffalo chopper which makes the whole thing super fine, but with the grinder a reasonable replacement is a second trip through. Fill into beef middles and poach at 80°C for 60 minutes or until cooked through and firm to the touch. cool in running cold water. Refrigerate for 24 hours. Cold smoke at this point if you wish.

Liverwurst recipe in percentages;
Ingredient % weight
cooked head bits 33  
shoulder and pork scrap 33  
pork liver 33  
salt 1.8  
pepper .2  
ground ginger .05  
ground cardamom .03  
mace .05  
honey .2  
onions 5  
pink salt (optional) .2  

email if you have questions...have fun!


Nov. 12 Time for the years end GTF Party. Pictures and stories to follow.


November 7- Time for saving and preserving. quinces, onions, roasted peppers, pickled peppers, tomatoes etc.

Quince mostarda recipe

poached quince...sugar syrup to balance

diced onion

chopped garlic

whole mustard seed

chili flake

red wine

red wine vinegar

brown sugar


Nov. 4-Here is Brad working on the next load of quinces, these are destined to be the sweet filling/garnish for some of Ana Patty's tartes.

kitchen slave profile; this is something new to come to the blog, a profile of one of the people I see every day. Hopefully doing something they love. Ben has discovered his passion.....pasta.

here is ben and one of his pasta shapes...orecchiette...we make them from a semolina and water dough. They are hand pressed from a round cut off of a long thin tube using the back of a butter knife. The pasta is then turned over a thumb and turned inside out and to expose the rough surface created by the knife. This rough surface is what will pick up the sauce. Ben is currently carving tools to replace his aching fingers.

Menu item.....beet risotto

next year item to look forward to......sour cherry mostarda


November the 1st-the weekend was full of ghouls etc. dancing at earth risings hallowed eve party. No one went missing, merriment was had, the sobbing bride was really only a costume.

The quince tree was asking to be pardoned it task of carrying a heavy load of quinces......we made jelly at home, membrillo and quince mostarda at work.........for the salumi platter which may expand to a cheese platter in the coming year.. Quince are truly magic. Yellow hard fruit turns soft and ruby, and tastes of roses. Any other good ideas? send me a line at . we are also trying to use some cipollini onions that farmer john brought by the kitchen to see if we could save them from the compost.....he said "we couldn't get them to stop growing" which means we have a green shoot in the middle......the flavor is still great. We used them in a sour cherry mostarda which we will preserve and use with livery things in the coming are coming.




10-29  the dinner was as expected super duper.

here is ivy inspecting the spinach for her first course while in the background dick is marking his pork chops on the grill. The menu was seasonal, great for the weather, and smartly planned... the guests were so excited to share this first solo flight, parents were in the house....regulars, and even other coworkers.

first course was a wilted spinach salad with a red wine and tarragon vinaigrette, roasted beets, goat cheese, and hazelnuts.

Second course was a butter nut, sweetmeat and acorn squash soup with curry. As ivy coached the servers "less is more ladies"

third course was a Carlton Farms pork chop with sweet potato puree, braised greens with bacon and apple

well done dick and ivy!!!!!!!

the last dinner service of the season......................nice end.

Oct. 28-meet  the crew; Ivy is one of the two sweetest human being ever created. She came to us on a lark and it turns out she is a natural line cook. Fearless, calm, eye's open, always knows when and where to problem....she doesn't know how good she is, or perhaps she's that good at everything so the kitchen skills are no big deal for her?  Next  to her is Audrey, and as you can see the sun's got nothing on her. Sporting her new kitchen shirt she brings a lot of perspectivetobacco into the kitchen. Next to her is Dick, who looks as if he is out of focus but nope he really is that fuzzy..or at least he is after not sleeping or eating for 36 hours. He is one of our resident alley cats. We expect great things next year as well as tomorrow night. He and Ivy are planning and executing this friday's dinner.

one last tidbit


Oct.26- Fun things at the farmstand today. The temperature in Philomath has dropped and we are scraping our windows before we can get on the road. When I get to the farm I am ready for something warm and hearty. I have discovered a love for polenta. Warm and welcoming, we top it with a brothy roast of butternut squash, leeks and tomatoes, poached egg, parm, and reduced balsamic. Come by and  try it, it is a new staff favorite. More cold weather goodness;

this is our tortiera di crespelle.......basically a lasagna with crepes substituting for pasta sheets. It is béchamel(besciamella) based which makes it rich and satisfying in this first cold weather.

here we have our seafood pot pie.....this version has rockfish and albacore tuna...tomorrow we add mussels as well.

All very nice, but again our season is coming to an end...we are using up our stored confit for the garbure on the menu...which empties out our tubs of duck legs in duck fat. The duck fat is like gold...we render the fat from every weeks ducks and have quite a treasure trove of lipids. To store it for the winter we will quart it up and toss it into the freezer.



Oct. 25- today we said goodbye to a good friend and college. Those of you who frequent the GTF know all about dienaba's next adventure, but for those of you who only visit through the world wide web here is the back story. The farm is seasonal in is the restaurant attached to the farm. We are open from Valentines day until the middle of November. We are winding down. People are scouting around for things to do in the off season. Our head of service, Dienaba, has received a super opportunity to head up a Museum in Friday Harbour, a town in the San Juan islands off the coast of Seattle. The museum will highlight the struggle of the eco activist known as the Sea Shepherd or his ship is known as the Sea Shepherd or he actually is a sea shepherd ...On this I am not so clear. But the opportunity is real and exciting and Dienaba has left us a few weeks early to follow her vision. I thank her for her peaceful and successful shepherding of our dining room in 2011. Best wishes in the new endeavor.



Oct.23-chanterelles harvested by the family near philomath

October 21-we had a splendid dinner put on by Matt, Brad and AAron

first course lavalake lamb sausage over sunchoke puree, grilled radicchio and red pepper pesto

second course; cured salmon with little gem lettuce, jimmy nardello peppers and goat cheese

third course; smoked duck breast over bread pudding with chard

sorry to say I didn't stay to get a picture of aarons dessert?!!?'

dick and ivy are up next week, stay tuned

oh and more bounty showed up during the dinner



October 20- As a way to celebrate the great year we have all had we decided to whip up some tasty 2011 t-shirts;


October 14- For those of you who followed our year....great year...thank you.

The evening dinners with jc are  done for the year...but for all fridays in october the junior members of the kitchen staff are presenting their own menus for a small(30) group of lucky diners. Tonight 's dinner was presented by none other than the beautiful and talented team of Paula and Lisa  wearing their new gtf kitchen babe t-shirts. Here is Paula with some of the season's first chanterelles foraged by none other than Paula.

which ended up in this very excellent tart;

Here are Lisa and Paula with the servers DT and Alison;

Brad and Matt are next. stay posted......



April 9-MOREtadella, croissants etc.  GTF has a new and dynamic pastry chef Anna Patty, she brings with her passion for croissants.....I was approached today by a writer wanting to do a piece on our croissants for the 10 rivers food web......obviously word is spreading, and is well deserved.


kitchen powerhouses.....

March 7-The Farmstand is up and running and we have had some early highlights;

Fresh pasta daily.....tagliatelle and a filled pasta. Mussels, sardines, watercress soup, ricotta stuffed cippollini onions with parsnip, kale and roma tomato braise, agnolotti the first week, ricotta the second, and chicken the third....this week? We have a new mozzarella.......this mozzarella is part whole cow and part whole milk from the breed of cow(waterbuffalo) the italians call bufalo.  Makes good pizzas is all I know.

On the salumi front we have made liverwurst, three types of pate, coppa, confited pork belly, duck confit, salami piccante, salami genoa, jagerwurst, bierschinken and we have only been open for three weeks. Brad is on fire for fine pig product.

But....when all the stars line up(oven temp, dough hydration, suave touch, savvy transfer) we have a baguette that I am honored to be a part of...proud of our efforts, well mostly ricky's efforts. and here is the baguette from  this saturday.

wooooooooooooooooooooooow     bonified


Feb 3-here is the basic recipe for coppa

100 %=pork(the cut is from the top of the pork butt...the part of the butt not cut open when the shoulder blade is removed here is an example from cured meats blog)

3.75% salt

1.25% pepper

.25 % cure #2

seasonings.......fennel seeds, red pepper flakes, juniper berries etc.

mix the salt cure and then massage into the coppa. Put coppa and extra cure into a ziploc bag and hold in the fridge for 10 days. 

Take out and wash of cure. Dry. dry, dry. slip into a beef bung and tie up with butchers twine like a roast. hang at 70% humidity and 50F until the weight drops by 30%. peel it slice it and eat it.

this is a picture of a white pepper and juniper berry cured coppa receiving the initial cure.

coppa at ~3weeks drying in the chamber

finished coppa, peel the casing and then its ready to slice


Jan 28+Mosaic Farm Visit

Mosaic farm visit......Chris is the nerve center of Mosaic farms and the battery and the sparkplug as well. He is one of the young farmers/ranchers bringing a new thought process and philosophy to the aglands of the Willamette Valley.  He is throwing his life and life savings into a venture to raise pasture raised heritage breed pigs and examining every choice he makes through the lens of sustainability.  Bottom line for us at GTF....happy pigs from across the road. We will be buying one pig a month to break down for salami, coppa, breakfast sausage, braised pork belly, bierschinken and yes RAGU. Not to mention Brads dream of having house cured ham for Saturday Breakfast.

the red wattles at Mosaic Farm

and this is the latest salumi to come out of the drying chamber.....Salami Piccante. Gently spicy, tight texture, juicy mouthfeel. We had thought to use it for pizza but the flavor is too elegant and subtle...this is headed for the salumi platter.



Jan 28-tomorrow Brad and I will go to Mosaic Farms. Brad is going to do something silly like work his tail off. I am going to take some pictures, jaw a bit, get enough info to pass on in this here blogita. Then I meet with the Roma cheese rep....yep we are raising the bar on the pizza's. finding  a fresh mozz to fit into our pizza plan. I will have notes on both meetings in t he next few days.

Season's first Salami Piccante is set to come out of the drying chamber. I had a sandwich made from it on our new english muffin!!! yes we are upping the ante on the eggs Burnheimer as well...prepare your stomach.



Jan 22-Valentines dinner and the opening of the farmstand is close at hand. Here is the menu for the dinner; (please note the absence of foie gras)

Amuse Gueule-?

Delicata Squash Torte with Caramelized Walnuts and Apple

Smoked Prawns over a Jerusalem Artichoke and Israeli Couscous Salad

House-made Coppa with Capers and Watercress

Chioggia Beet Sorbet

Duck Breast with Parsnip Puree and Black Kale

Steamed Orange Pudding with Candied Zest and Caramel Sauce


Jan 18-Main man Brad is back from staging at Laurel Hurst Market in Portland!

A stage is the poor man's culinary order to see and learn what your favorite chef does firsthand and behind the scenes, you have to go work for free. And most likely do the chores no one else in the kitchen, even the lowliest potato peeler, wants to do. In our off season here at the farm we arranged to have Brad the bearded wonder boy of bier schinken sausage/pizza wrangler fame go up to Portland to further his education. Laurelhurst Market kindly allowed Brad to slave away for a week for free.

and for this we are gratefull.

Brad's first task was to make Blood Sausage (black pudding, boudin noir, etc.). the instant I heard that I was irrationally jealous for 2.2 seconds.

Anyhow you can expect to see some of Brad's new excitement when we open on Feb 14th for lunch.

Go organic!

Dec 8- here is a small film about gathering together farm



Nov. 18- A packed acar went on a apilgrimage to apizza scholls and wwe liked the crust. but  to begin we had pastries and coffee and baguette at little t bakers. We then headed to clarklewis to have lunch.....rueben sandwich and the buttermilk pannacotta were the hits.........we then left clarklewis and headed straight for olympic provisions where we had beer, prosecco, charcuterie plate and a chacroute garni of sorts. Great plate....we had country pate of duck, and of rabbit...we had a couple of the salamis, mortadella, pork liver mousse and a side plate of pickles,,,,,,topped off with a pizza with an unbelieveable crust.

Nov. 13th-as we speak the last eggs burnheimer of the season are being plated and consumed. Brad, Ricky, Ivy and Asa are busting a move to get the food out.

As the season comes to a close I wish to thank all of the people who help the farm to fire on all cylinders. Barn crew, seed crew, field hats off to you.

and to the guests who come to eat the sometimes challenging food.......thanks a million...your patronage is humbling and surprising(last lunch service of the year will stand in the recordbooks) and rewarding and appreciated. We in the kitchen and the farmstand will try to uphold our part of the deal.


The kitchen crew is off to portland to eat (apizza scholls, clark lewis, olympic provisions, and laurelhurst market. and then for dinner...) and descriptions coming soon.






Just got back from the annual Salone De Gusto in Torino, Italy.  The Slow Food Conference "Terra Madre" was held this year as a neighbor to the tradeshow.

Slowfood Corvallis was kind enough to encourage me to go and represent and to defray some of the costs involved. And it was a week go to Italy.....and attend a salami packed trade show.....and eat bagna cauda,,,,,and pizza..... and espresso.......and visit a mozzarella factory....and drink prosecco, grappa, and vino di Asti.



Slowfood Corvallis yeah.


Help yourself to the videos with recipes, just click the link below

*Braised Monkfish en Meurette

*Braised Pork Belly

*Braised Lamb Shank

*Lamb Shank Terrine

*Stuffed Quail w/Medjool Dates

*Pieds de Cochon Farcis (stuffed Trotter)

*Sausage Basics (Toulouse Sausage)

*Sausage Basics (Italian Sausage)


Found treasure

"At the end of the day, it's just food isn't it? Just food."

          Marco Pierre White


who titled the recipe section of his first book: Food of  the Gods


its a dazzling book


white heat


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